By Veronica Idowu

On the 3rd January, 2023, the shocking news of the death of Late Very Rev. Fr. Raphael Abiola Adebayo reached millions of Catholic Faithful within the Lagos Province. This necessitated the Funeral Mass for the cleric that was held on Thursday 12th January, 2023 at Holy Cross Cathedral, Lagos. The Mass was celebrated by Most Rev. Alfred Adewale Martins; the Archbishop of Lagos and flanked by Most Rev. Francis Obafemi Adesina (Bishop of Ijebu-Ode Diocese) and Msgr. Bernard Okodua. Conspicuous was Anthony Cardinal Olubunmi Okogie. Hundreds of Priests were also there to concelebrate while multitude of Laity from across the Province also was present.

Describing him at the Funeral Mass, the homilist; Rev Fr. Jerome Omoregie said that Very Rev. Fr. Raphael was a priest who made himself available for the people and a tender caregiver for the poor and the needy. He was a strong and fervent priest who truly served God and the church. According to Fr. Jerome, “all of us should ask ourselves, when we die what will people say of us as Christians?”

At the funeral, the Vicar General of Lagos Archdiocese; Very Rev. Msgr. John Aniagwu thanked all those who were at the funeral and specially thanked Bishop Francis Obafemi Adesina for showing solidarity and coming to bid farewell to Late Fr. Raphael Adebayo.

The Metropolitan of Lagos Province; Most Rev. Alfred Adewale Martins publicly sends his condolences to the family of Adebayo especially to the mother of the Late Priest who has sacrificed two of her son to becoming Priests yet has had to mourn the loss of the two sons to eternal rest. According to the Archbishop, “Fr. Adebayo lived and bore the fruits of the Holy Spirit. That is why we can say so many good things about him. Let us also make effort to bear the fruits of the Holy Spirit.”

Rev. Fr. Raphael Adebayo who was a priest ordained for Lagos Archdiocese in 1980 was until his death the former Parish Priest of Catholic Church of Resurrection, Magodo. Before his death, he had been sick and taken care of by the Priests and lay faithful of the Archdiocese of Lagos.

The final commendation was conducted by Bishop Francis Adesina. May God grant Late Very Rev Fr. Raphael Adebayo eternal rest and a dwelling place in heaven. Amen.